Dr Ben Williamson Seminar – Sentient schools: educational institutions as software-supported big data platforms & sensing environments

Dr Ben Williamson, from Stirling University, recently came to Oxford University to give a seminar, Sentient schools: educational institutions as software-supported big data platforms & sensing environments, to the learning and new technologies research group.

Dr Williamson discussed the increasing emphasis on the idea of the ‘smart city’ in technology related industry and academic discourses and the developing vision of cities gaining a form of sentience. Drawing on both industry and academic literature, he asked what education might look like in such a technology focused and data driven context. Highlighting the hidden power of the programmers and technological designers he raised a number of questions related to structure and agency, power in education and technology, the dominance of certain discourses in academia, and the place of schooling in the future.

The slides from the talk can be downloaded from the LNTRG Website: /wordpress/wp-content/uploads/2014/01/BW_Sentient-schools_Oxford-Uni_Feb2015.pptx

You can read more about Dr Williamson’s ideas on the Code Acts in Education Blog: https://codeactsineducation.wordpress.com/2014/11/14/smart-schools-in-sentient-cities/

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